A Church of England school
What does it mean to be a Church of England school?
A Church of England school is, like community schools, funded through the Local Authority, but the building is owned by the Diocese of Southwark. A majority of the governing body posts are 'Foundation' governors, with a specific role to support the Christian foundation and ethos of the school. Church schools undergo SIAMS (Church-run) inspections as well as government OFSTED inspections. Church schools set their own admission criteria - our admission policy can be found by clicking here.
In the everyday running of the school, there is little difference between a Church school and a community school. However the ethos of a school can be strongly influenced by its Christian foundation. While recognising that the pupils and staff are of all faiths and none, the school as a whole holds an act of 'collective' worship every day. The love and kindness for each other which is at the heart of the Christian faith is exemplified in the attitudes and relationships found and encouraged at the school.
"A Christian school is one in which the atmosphere has that kind of openness about it, that sense that people are worth spending time with, that people need time to grow, need loving attention. The Christian Gospel says that every person has a unique task to do, with God, and for God, whether they know it or not. It doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone involved has to share the same theology or philosophy. It doesn’t mean that everyone knows that they have this relationship with God, and is consciously working at it. But a Christian school is one in which the entire atmosphere is pervaded by a conviction that there is something mysterious, and potentially wonderful, in everybody.”
What happens in Collective Worship (Assembly)?
We believe that in our daily collective worship we try to create an occasion, which produces a variety of responses, one of which is worship. By providing different levels of interest and involvement, all children will feel included, whatever their beliefs or background. However, underpinning our collective worship are the core values of Christianity and worship that reflect the Anglican tradition (see note at end). It is our aim for children to ‘keep their minds open’ to learning from the faith and beliefs of others.
The following timetable shows the usual structure although this will vary when we have visitors. (see below)
- Monday 9:05-9:30am– whole school worship, led by Reverend Tim Goode
- Tuesday 9:00-9:15, 9:15-9:30am– KS1/KS2worship through singing, led by the music teacher and senior leader
- Wednesday 9:00-9:15, 9:15-9:30am - celebration of achievement
- Thursday 10:05-10:30am - presenting and reflecting on class learning in RE lessons; celebrating class learning with wider school community
- Friday 10:05-10:30am - whole school worship, led by the Headteacher
Although the format of worship will vary, the expectation is always that children are engaged, involved and reflective.
The following elements are also a part of our school practice:
- Music as the children enter the hall - To create an appropriate atmosphere for the time of worship
- Welcome and lighting the candle - To remind the children that Jesus, the light of the world is with us
- Opening prayer - Either the Lord’s Prayer or a school prayer
- A time of reflection - Either a time of silence or listening to music
- A hymn - Either selected from the term playlist or by the worship leader to reflect the theme of the worship
How are children from non-Christian backgrounds included?
Our collective worship times are fully inclusive and all children are encouraged to think and reflect on the theme being conveyed. Children can choose to close their eyes and reflect or join in with the reading of prayers.
One of our school prayers, that reflects our school values ...
Help me to try hard at school and to be resilient.
I am grateful for those who encourage me to learn.
Help me to be kind.
I am grateful for those who show kindness to me.
Help me to enjoy learning and to be creative.
I am grateful for our teachers who help make learning fun.
Spend a short time in silence reflecting on something you are grateful for.
What is the school's Religious Education curriculum?
Click on the link below to take you to the RE curriculum section on the website where you can read our our curriculum guide and see some of our blogs showing the curriculum 'in action'!